The top spot in the Shimano road cycling shoe lineup is always well-regarded and frequently seen in the professional peloton. The previous generation hit the market two years ago and brought with it extensive changes including an updated fit. Although that detail did take some adjusting for long-time fans, we found it good enough to claim a spot in our best cycling shoes buyers guide. Now, after a season on the feet of Mathieu Van der Poel, Shimano is making an updated version available to the rest of us.
Tech Specs: Shimano S-Phyre RC903
Price: $450.00 / €359.95
Sizes: EU 40-48 (half sizes available 40-46.5)
Weight: 252g per shoe (Actual, size 44)
Colours: White, Blue, Red, Black
The Shimano S-Phyre RC903 does not represent any drastic changes. Instead, Shimano continues to leverage the data gained from the brand’s proprietary Bikefitting.com pedalling analyzer as well as feedback from professional athletes and customers. The details have seen small adjustments and new solutions only where needed. That means the same basic questions remain.
There’s no doubt that anyone looking for a top-shelf summer road cycling shoe definitely has Shimano on the shortlist. We’ve spent time riding in a variety of situations to find the strengths and weaknesses of this latest option from Shimano. Keep reading to see if the S-Phyre RC903 is the right shoe for your riding.
Design and aesthetics
There are times when writing the section about aesthetics in a review is a joy. This is one of those times. The Shimano S-Phyre RC903 is a gorgeous shoe as long as you don’t mind standing out. Shimano doesn’t use fancy colour names and instead lets the red, black, blue, or white do the talking all on their own.
Even in pictures, you can see that if there was ever a time a brand should use a fancy colour name, this is it. The options are vibrant and rich with pearlescents in some spots and metallics in others. There are textural shifts and every stitch and detail looks purposeful. There’s also a monochromatic style that is almost straight out of an art school colour theory class.
If you recall the previous generation shoe, most of this isn’t totally new. There are some updates though. In the iconic Shimano blue, the same metallic hue covers the bulk of the centre but now it extends all the way across the toe box. At the same time, the use at the…
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